United States District Court, S.D. Indiana, Indianapolis Division
WASHINGTON FRONTIER LEAGUE BASEBALL, LLC, and STUART A. WILLIAMS, Plaintiffs,
MICHAEL E. ZIMMERMAN, MKE BASEBALL, LLC, MKE SPORTS & ENTERTAINMENT, LLC, FRONTIER PROFESSIONAL BASEBALL, INC., W. CHRIS HANNERS, BRYAN WICKLINE, and JOSHUA E. SCHAUB, Defendants.
ENTRY ON MOTION TO RECONSIDER
WALTON PRATT, JUDGE United States District Court
matter is before the Court on a Motion to Reconsider filed by
Plaintiffs Washington Frontier League Baseball, LLC
(“Washington Club”) and Stuart A. Williams
(“Mr. Williams”) (collectively
“Washington”) (Filing No. 74). Following
motions to dismiss filed by Defendants Michael E. Zimmerman,
MKE Baseball, LLC, and MKE Sports & Entertainment, LLC
(collectively “Zimmerman Defendants”) and
Defendant Frontier Professional Baseball, Inc.
(“Frontier League”), the Court dismissed with
prejudice Count II of Washington's Amended Complaint.
Washington asks the Court to reconsider that ruling. For the
following reasons, the Court DENIES the Motion to Reconsider.
motions to reconsider are not specifically authorized by the
Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, courts in the Seventh
Circuit apply Rule 59(e) or Rule 60(b) standards to these
motions. Smith v. Utah Valley Univ., 2015 U.S. Dist.
LEXIS 70271, at *3-4 (S.D. Ind. June 1, 2015). A motion to
alter or amend under Rule 59(e) “must be filed no later
than 28 days after the entry of the judgment.”
Fed.R.Civ.P. 59(e). If timely filed, a motion styled as a
motion to reconsider should be considered under Rule 59(e).
Kiswani v. Phoenix Sec. Agency, Inc., 584 F.3d 741,
742 (7th Cir. 2009). The Court issued its Order on Motions to
Dismiss (Filing No. 73) on November 18, 2015.
Washington filed its “Motion to Reconsider”
(Filing No. 74) on December 2, 2015, only fourteen
days after the Court's Order. Therefore, the Court will
analyze the Motion as a motion to alter or amend under Rule
purpose of a motion to alter or amend judgment under Rule
59(e) is to ask the Court to reconsider matters
“properly encompassed in a decision on the
merits.” Osterneck v. Ernst & Whinney, 489
U.S. 169, 174 (1989). “A Rule 59(e) motion will be
successful only where the movant clearly establishes: (1)
that the court committed a manifest error of law or fact, or
(2) that newly discovered evidence precluded entry of
judgment.” Cincinnati Life Ins. Co. v. Beyrer,
722 F.3d 939, 954 (7th Cir. 2013) (citation and quotation
marks omitted). Relief pursuant to a Rule 59(e) motion to
alter or amend is an “extraordinary remed[y] reserved
for the exceptional case.” Foster v. DeLuca,
545 F.3d 582, 584 (7th Cir. 2008). A Rule 59(e) motion may be
used “to draw the district court's attention to a
manifest error of law or fact or to newly discovered
evidence.” United States v. Resnick, 594 F.3d
562, 568 (7th Cir. 2010). A manifest error “is not
demonstrated by the disappointment of the losing party. It is
the wholesale disregard, misapplication, or failure to
recognize controlling precedent.” Oto v.
Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., 224 F.3d 601, 606 (7th Cir.
2000) (citation and quotation marks omitted). Furthermore,
“a Rule 59(e) motion is not an opportunity to
relitigate motions or present arguments, issues, or facts
that could and should have been presented earlier.”
Brownstone Publ'g, LLC v. AT&T, Inc., 2009
U.S. Dist. LEXIS 25485, at *7 (S.D. Ind. Mar. 24, 2009).
asserts that the Court should reconsider its decision to
dismiss with prejudice Washington's claim for tortious
interference with a business relationship because
“Indiana law permits relief for a claim of tortious
interference with a business relationship when the
relationship is in the negotiation stages.” (Filing
No. 74 at 2 ¶3.) Washington acknowledges that case
law requires something more than speculative business
opportunities or possible business opportunities to support a
claim for tortious interference with a business relationship.
There must a level of certainty or probability to support the
claim; a hope or a speculative prospect is not enough.
opposition to the Motion to Reconsider, Frontier League
asserts that the Court did not make any errors, and there has
been no change in the law or facts since the submission was
made to the Court. Frontier League asserts that such problems
rarely arise, and motions to reconsider should be equally
rare. Frontier League points out that motions to reconsider
should be considered in only the rarest of circumstances, and
this is not such a circumstance.
Defendants oppose Washington's Motion to Reconsider,
explaining that Washington is simply rearguing its earlier
arguments, which is not the purpose of a motion to
reconsider. They also assert that the Court did not commit an
error of law regarding claims for tortious interference with
a business relationship.
review of the Amended Complaint, the Court's Order
dismissing Count II, and Washington's argument for
reconsideration, the Court declines to reconsider its earlier
Order because Washington has not shown a manifest error of
law or fact. Instead, Washington has shown its disappointment
as the losing party on its claim and appears to try to
relitigate the level of certainty of its prospective
opportunity to enter into a business relationship. This does
not warrant reconsideration.
foregoing reasons, Plaintiffs Washington Frontier League
Baseball, LLC and Stuart A. Williams's Motion ...